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Critical Eleven of Marriage

Critical Eleven

In every relationship, particulary when you’ve just married, things might be a bit tricky at first. For some it’s the happiest period of their lives but for others, it can be the hardest time as well because things are not stable enough so there’s a few problems here and there. In marriage things can go either way and sometimes it can even go both ways. It’s good at first but gone bad all of the sudden as the relationship progress.

Just like planes, marriage can be critical as well. This movie title was taken from terms Critical Eleven which is the most crucial time during the flight of each aeroplane. This begins from 3 minutes after take off and 8 minutes before landing. And the terms Critical Eleven really sums up the story you’re going to watch in this movie. It’s the most critical times in early stage of marriage.

Critical Eleven tells a story about Ale played by Reza Rahadian that met Anya played by Adinia Wirasti in a flight from Jakarta to Sidney. They met on the plane and after the meeting, they eventually forms a romantic relationship and finally getting married. That’s just the happy part of the story. The rest of the movie feels really different than the first twenty minutes of the movie.

In short, their happy marriage falls apart after Anya had miscarriage. And things started to get even more depressing as their relationship are getting worse and worse. Adapted from best selling novel of the same name, this movie feels more grounded to reality although a few cliché were still there and you can notice it in certain parts.  But the actors honestly make me forget about all that because they were amazing! They really stands out!

Both Reza and Adinia gave a very great performances. They both really lovely as a couple and they both really sweet together. They carry this movie altogether and they make me really feel their struggles. For girls they will wish that Ale exist in real life and for man, I think they will probably wish they’re Ale. They’ve done their best to play the characters and I do wish they were dating in real life because their chemistry is so good!

I like the way they framed the story in this movie. First half of the movie is the happy part, and then things started to shift little by little. As we attached to both characters, things were just getting worse and worse making us really hope they will survive their marriage. It tells a very good lesson specially for those who wishes to get married soon.

One thing I don’t like about this movie is the pacing. A few minutes in, the pace seems sloppy as if they wanted Ale and Anya to be together as quickly as they can. As a result we don’t really know much from both characters when the movie begins. All we know is the generic information that didn’t really distinguish the characters from any other movie. In fact I can’t quite grasp their characters until midway point of the movie, and that is a very big problem in their story design.

Maybe for people that read the books they can understand the characters, but for me that didn’t read it? There are also a few plot point that feels kinda rush for me. Although they made it up in the second half of the movie as the story getting better as they reach the climax. I still think that the choices the characters made kinda simplistic just like typical drama tropes.

For me, this movie is sweet and very lovely, I love the cast, but their characters seems a bit simplistic sadly. It still didn’t make them stand out among  other dramas. If it wasn’t Reza and Adinia, I’m sure it would be way more cheesy and feels like any other drama. And the dialog is not really special, in fact in a few scenes it feels kinda cheesy for me.

But despite my criticism, I still I appreciate the story and the movie. I do think they make a decent drama and an enjoyable movie. I still can enjoy it. This is not a perfect movie but at least it gave us a glimpse of “critical eleven” in marriage. And did Anya and Ale survive? Well I think you should watch it if you want to know the answer!

The Unexpected Romance in Italian Summer

call me by your name

Do you like romance? Do you like coming of age story? Well if you like two of those things you can check this movie titled Call Me by Your Name directed by Italian director Luca Guadagnino. It’s an unlikely story and if you think about it for a second you started to wonder how creepy the plot was. I mean the general storyline of this movie is about a  young boy falling in love with an adult sexy male in the form of Armie Hamer.

Not that I’m complaining, I mean the point of the plot is to explore the idea of unlikely relationship and the youthful spirit of love itself. I’m just saying that it’s a very weird and delicate plot. If you didn’t make it right, it could be cheesy and unremarkable. But thankfully, Luca Guadagnino did a great job and this movie feels pretty romantic and beautiful as well. On paper this story would not work since it touch a really delicate topic, but somehow it will able to touch you deep in your heart.

Watching this movie fells like eating a chocolate that taste like a coffee. It looks like a chocolate bar, but it’s more bitter and make you open your eyes because of the caffeine. That’s what I’m feeling while watching this. I think that’s one of the reason why this generates a lot of buzz and even won an Oscar for best Adapted Screenplay this year.

Call me by your name tells a story about Elio (Timothée Chalamet) a 17 year old boy who lived in Italy during summer. His dad who’s a professor invites Oliver (Armie Hammer) to help him for his research. In short, they finally fall in love with each other during the time Oliver spend summer in Italy. The story is kinda simple actually, and we watched as the two people fell in love with each other in rather weird but sweet way.

Call me by your name was full of romantic vibes and beautiful shots of Italian countryside. The cinematography can be sum only with two words. Beautiful and very captivating. It really made me wanted to go to Italy for real. It really captures the summer vibes and the beauty of Italian countryside. The setting also acts as metaphor of beautiful yet very bright life of a teenager as well as the romance between Elio and Oliver too. Hot and full of surprises.

The story moves a bit slow and in the beginning I didn’t expect that Elio would fall for Oliver. I mean I know in the end they would hook up somehow, but at the beginning, Elio was a bit awkward around Oliver. Slowly but sure, their romance start to take shape. It’s very weird at first, but somehow it feels quite sweet in the end.

The acting was superb! Timothée Chalamet really shines here. Armie Hammer was great too. Both actors really deserves an applause because their chemistry is remarkable and they totally make me believe their characters on screen. I’m sure Timothée has bright future in the business!

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The one thing bothering me is the tempo of the movie. For some audience, I’m sure it’s going to be a problem because this movie really focused on both characters and it really takes the time. Guadagnino really builds the athmosphere quite well and he didn’t rush things out. That’s one of the beauty of this movie.  That makes us feel the vibe of Italy as the romance between Elio Oliver builds up.Sometimes that makes me feels this movie loses the momentum.

In the end of the day it’s not a problem for me because it really is a beautiful movie with sweet romantic story that you’ve never expected before. It’s rather weird but I’m sure it’s going to impact you quite deeply. I never really thought that this movie would be a huge hit specially considering this is a rather controversial topic to bring up. But at the end of the day you will sympathize with Elio. After watching  this movie I’m sure the Italian summer vibes will resonate and lingers for quite sometimes in your heart!


Get Out from here!

Get Out

If you like watching youtube comedy sketch videos the chances are you’ve watched Key & Peele. They’re very funny and offered a very great comedy in youtube. But who knows that Jordan Peele who stars on the famous youtube videos could produce a very great film. In 2015, we previously watched Adam Mc Kay made The Big Short a satire about American housing market crisis in 2008. It’s quite a shock because he used to make comedy movies, but this year, Jordan Peele made even more surprising than Adam Mc Kay as his movie “Get Out” gross over 200 millions and generate a huge amount of buzz on the process.

Get Out offered a very fresh take on a horror genre with a blend of social commentary to racial problems in the US. No wonder last year everyone talked about this movie. What’s more special about it is the fact that Jordan Peele could crafts a very solid story and plot so that we could enjoy the film without being preachy and pretentious. Get Out even won the Oscar this year for best original screenplay.

Basically it tells a story of Chris played by a breakthough actor Daniel Kaluuya who visit his girlfriend’s parents house in the cabin in the woods. It’s a very simple plot but as it turns out, the parents weren’t as ordinary as they may seem. They seem weird and bizzare, specially his girlfriend’s brother which constantly make a very awkward dialogs and uncomfortable behavior. Not to mention the mom that could literally hypnotize Chris with just a cup of tea. That’s scary as hell!

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In the middle of the movie, things started to get even weirder when the family held a garden party where their friends come and seems to be obsessed with Chris’s blackness. The racial commentary seems very prominent as the white people constantly admire black people in a rather unpleasing way. Of course in the movie, that makes Chris feel very uncomfortable. But when he plan to get out from the cabin, things becomes very complicated.

You gotta watch the movie if you want to know the rest of the story. But there’s a fair amount of excitement and thrilling scenes there. After watching it you would feel both stunned and start to wonder the meaning behind it. What’s so great about this movie is how Jordan Peele decides to tell his take on racial stereotypes and critics through the story. He tells it with symbolism and he really maximize and utilize the power of the genre to show the audience how uncomfortable the issue is.

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So in a way, it’s like you’ve learned something without actually going to the classroom. It’s very rare these days for a movie like this to actually gain a huge success. So when I first heard about it, I started to wonder how great that was. When I watched it, I kinda see the point. It such a very wonderful experience and we gotta see a powerfull acting combined with a thriller vibes. It really bring up a lot of things to a discuss and really reflects our current situation specially in the US.

The term get out which was also the title of the movie is a very strong statement for racial problems in America. When you watch the  movie you started to feel and sympathize with Chris. Not to mention, you gotta feel like you’ve just wanted “get out” from there. You really couldn’t see that coming did you? I mean how many horror movies have such a deep and powefull message to the audience? That’s one of the strongest elements from this movie. By doing so, Jordan Peele could avoid cliché and actually crafts quite an original movie.

With a debut this good, I think Jordan Peele has a very bright future in directing. If he continues to make this kinda thought provoking films I’m sure he’s going to be a very successful director. Or maybe he could mix it up with Key & Peele vibes so it could have a bit comedic tone in his next movie? Who knows, we’re just going to watch what he made next after this.


Justice League of DC

Justice League of DC

If you talk about the superheroes, you probably will say Spiderman, Captain America or Iron Man. That’s a very understandable answer specially because they’re The Avengers and Marvel films specificly has made a name of themselves by making  a good superhero flicks. Now if you like comic books, you know that Marvel is not the only  comic books that produces a great hero. DC on the other hand also have a lot of superheroes. But sadly, over the years, their DC EU movies are trashed by the critics and were divided by their own fans and audience.

If you look at the rating and critics, Wonder Woman probably is the most successful films of DC in recent years. But that’s not enough to compete with Marvel Cinematic Universes so DC needs to make up their own team to deal with The Avengers. So they come up with Justice League. This film was previously directed by Zack Snyder before he step out and being replaced by Joss Weedon. Although being through some difficulties and production problems, finally Justice League was released in 2017.

Justice League continues the story after Batman v Superman as Batman and Wonder Woman trying to assemble the team in this film. The entourage consist of aquaman, cyborg, and also the flash. In the movie, they have to face Steppenwolf that wanted to take over the earth by unifying the energy of three mother boxes. As a story, this doesn’t really stand out and to be honest was quite a generic one.

The movie surprisingly were pretty good, enjoyable, and the most important thing is : short. The duration is only about 2 hours, not 2,5 hours like Batman  v Superman so the duration was way shorter. Although it’s also become the main problem of the movie. Duration makes this movie feels very rushed. There are a lot of scenes that seems incomplete.

I think it may occurred because they’ve changed directors in the middle of production so they have to reshoot or even deleted some key part of the story. Not to mention, Henry Cavill’s CGI mouth. That’s a huge problem because it really makes the story uneven. It’s like I’m watching a series of montages without a paid off in the end. I know a lot of people hate CGI villain and this time, I do really hate steppenwolf. He’s just a generic villain with no clear motivation.

I feel more scared of superman’s power. In the middle of the movie, there’s a scene where all of them fighting Superman and all of them were defeated, it’s like he’s a god! And the worst part of the movie is batman. I didn’t blame it on Afleck’s performance. He’s a great batman, and I love him in the Batman v Superman, he’s literally the best thing from that movie. But in this one, he’s the worst. It’s been established that batman’s power is his wealth, and has become a running joke in the movie but that’s it.

We didn’t see him do anything substantial or meaningfull. He’s useless compare to other member who had superpowers. Despite all of the criticism, I’m sure a fanatic comicbook fan would say that this movie is better in Snyder cut version or whatever. But I really think this is a very strong reminder to Warner Bros and DC. They can’t treat their properties like this. As a moviegoers I don’t care if this film even had 100 versions of cut. If it’s not good enough, it would not be good enough.

And I have to say, it’s an enjoyable time watching this movie. I still can enjoy it but it didn’t do anything better than their previous attempts. Apart from Wonder Woman, DC EU sadly needs a lot more work to do if they wanted to compete with MCU. Watching this movie is like eating a very good looking tenderloin, but when you slice in the middle, it’s raw. If you like “rare” meat maybe you’ll eat it but if you don’t like it, you’re not going to eat it.

At the end of the day, Justice League is not an improvement nor the worst DC EU movies. Justice League just simply have less problems than DC EU previous films. If they wanted to be a serious contender to MCU, they have to fix their core problems specially their characters and their story.  By then, maybe we could’ve hope there will be a time when DC EU actually beat MCU superheroes.

A Farewell for our Beloved Wolverine


These days, superhero genre has become one of the most profitable movies of all time. With such a high demand for superhero movies, studios executives were racing to produce brand new superhero everytime. Over the years we watch at least one or two superhero released each year. From the terrible ones like Fan4tastic to great ones like Avengers. Last year, one superhero movie rise above the rest to be one of the best films of 2017. It really gave the fans a beautiful farewell to the character.

It’s the wolverine origin story titled Logan. Let’s be honest here, X men universe has going through ups and downs, sometimes it’s good but sometimes it’s not so good. But this one? Well, it’s so good, even the fanboys worship the movie! One of the reason why is because this film ends Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine in a rather spectaculan fashion. This is a wolverine movie unlike any other previous one.

Logan tell a story about Logan aka Wolverine in the year 2029 where the mutant species was on the verge of extinction because in 25 years, there’s no new born mutant. Logan worked as a limo driver in Texas as his  healing power has weakened and he’s getting old. He lives with Caliban (another mutant) and ageing Charles Xavier. One day, a former nurse of biotechnology corporation hire Logan to escort an 11 year old girl named Laura to Eden a refuge in North Dakota. At first Logan didn’t want to do it but he agreed eventually.

Things started to get interesting as they were chased by a cyborg named Donald Pierce and they eventually discovers that Laura is actually a mutant too. It’s a thrilling ride and journey to watch this movie specially if you’re a comic book fan. This movie also doesn’t shy away from violence and blood because it’s rated R. So if you’re really into that stuff, I’m sure you’re going to love it. What’s so surprising for me is the depiction of our lead character Logan. I mean it really take balls  for the studio to greenlit such a movie and it’s well worth it! As a result, they make a very unique take on superhero genre.

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As an audience you wouldn’t feel like you’re watching a superhero movie. I feel like I was just watching an ordinary movie with wolverine in it. That’s a good thing because this actually make us more relateable to the character. They make us really care for Logan so in the end of the movie, the farewell feels really touching and we’re going to miss Hugh Jackman. I never thought I could feel that way in a superhero movie.

It’s quite a gloomy movie with an action spectacle that always make you alert and watch the screen. It’s one part tragedy and depressing but on the other part it’s an action packed superhero movie. It’s like swalowing a very bitter pills but you drink it up with coca cola. Don’t try this at home by the way, but that’s just a way for me to describe this movie. On the core of the movie, it’s very pessimistic and depressing but we also watch quite a lot of fun on it so in a way it’s a bittersweet tragedy.

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One thing I don’t like about this movie is the villain. I know it’s very hard to make a good villain. I get it. But Donald Pierce as a villain in this movie didn’t really shine to make me scared. For me his presence is just a mere formality. I could relate to logan’s journey and inner turmoil but Donald Pierce could have been stronger as a character.

In the end this movie is amazing! I’m sure there are a lot of you who love this movie. Even some people consider this movie were snubbed by the Oscar this year. Me personaly, I wouldn’t go that far but I do really think this is a solid superhero movie. A very refreshing take on the genre and this would open up another R rated superhero movie in the future. I’m not going to spoil anything for the end of the movie, but I think if this is the last time we’ve ever gonna see Wolverine, that’s a proper farewell for him. So go watch it yourself to see wolverine the last time on screen.


Reviving the old cult classic “Satan’s Slave”

satan slave

Horor movies was proven to be one of the best genre when it comes to box office and provits. Over the years in Hollywood we watched some of the good flicks such as paranormal activity, insidious, the blairwitch project etc. So is Indonesian horror. They’ve proven to be great when it comes to generating money, but the quality? Not so much. I mean, Indonesian horror was filled with softcore terrible sexy heroine in their movies or even combine it with comedy which makes it worst and hard to watch.

If you’re Indonesian, you know the horror genre oftenly missed by the audience because the quality is so bad. I do mean really really bad. Although Indonesia is one of the country where we could found a wide range variety of ghosts, we haven’t watched a great Indonesian horror movies recently. In early 2000’s, there’s Tusuk Jalangkung and it’s super scary. But 2010’s not many horrors got our attention that much.

But Satan’s Slave, or Pengabdi Setan surprisingly generated a very huge hype with the audience last year. To be honest I’m not a fan of horror movies because I never feel so scared in the theatres while watching it. At best, I felt kinda surprised when the jumpscare comes. But when it comes to this movie, it sounds pretty promising. It was made by Joko Anwar, and the trailer looks fantastic for Indonesian horror flicks.

This movie is a remake of the 1980’s movie with the same name which was a pretty great cult horror Indonesian movies. It tells a story about a downfall of the family in 1980’s. The Mom who used to be a singer suffered a very mysterious ill for three years and finally died. As a result, the family live in debt and now they live in grandma’s house. One day the ghost of their mom comes to their family and things started to build up from there. Later in the movie we discovered that the mom has joined a cult and involved with a very dangerous people.

The story is pretty great and it’s quite unexpected. Watching this movie is like entering a haunted house and get out with a smile on your face. You’ve already seen the ghost inside the house and once you get out from there all you wanted to do is to brag with your friends how cool that was. Okay, maybe not a great example to sum this movie. But honestly, that’s what I feel.

Joko Anwar is a great director, and when you watched his movies recently, you can tell that he really wanted to make a this kinda movies. Halfworlds in HBO, Modus Anomali, Pintu Terlarang, now Satan’s Slave. You can tell that he really belongs to make this movie. It’s like you’ve taste a pizza from pizza specialist. It taste really good because the chef really loves pizza and you can taste every passion in each and every bite. Same thing goes with this movie.

I can easily tell that he really enjoy making this movie. The acting was great, and one of my favorites is the ghost in this movie. At the climax near the end, we can watch the hous was invaded by them and it was super cool. The only thing I hate is how short the sequence was. I mean I really enjoy it and I really wanted more. It’s like I ride a roller coaster, but once it ends, I wanted to ride it again with a higher speed or higher more extreme tracks.

This movie doesn’t just rely on jumscares, but also explores the mythology and the Indonesian ghost with a mix from fresh perspective which makes it more engaging to watch. I’m not saying that this was the greatest horror movies ever made, but I’m saying this is a movie worth to watch. It’s not perfect and you can spot a few drawbacks here and there. But for Indonesian horror movies, it’s a good step since we didn’t watch so many movies like this.

At the end of the day you may ask didn’t this movie scarier than the original? Maybe not. Didn’t it sticks to the original storyline? Maybe not. But let’s be real here, why bother to make it like that if you can make it your own? And I think that’s what Joko Anwar did. And he did it really good. I think he would do a sequel out of this and that’s what I really wanted to see. So let’s wait and see that happen soon!


The Search of Identity in Lady Bird

Lady Bird

The Search of Identity in Lady Bird

Last year there was a movie that stole everyone eyes and got 99% by Rotten Tomatoes. That movie is a coming of age story about a girl “Lady Bird” (Saoirse Ronan) in her senior year in a catholic high school who’s struggling with pretty much every single relationship she has (with her mother, friends, boyfriend, siblings and even her bird name). The story was not really special, there are tons of movies about the struggle of being a teenager, then what makes Lady Bird such a big hit in box office?

Lady Bird was directed by Greta Gerwig. You may know her from Noah Baumbach movies like Greenberg or Frances Ha. This is her debut as a director and she also the writer of this movie. It tells a story of a girl who live in Sacremento. Fun fact: Greta was a native teacher at Sacremento. After she meet Ronan and tell about her idea, Ronan came up with the idea for this caracter name, yep! Its “Lady Bird”. Ronan said to Greta “why don’t you call me Lady Bird?” she said that name has no meaning it just pop up on their head when they read the script.

Back to the question, so what makes Lady Bird such a special movie than any other coming of age movie? This movie was fueled with life lesson that we might not noticed before. It is a pure movie that show us the human nature and show us if everyone (no matter young or old) has their own problem. Seometimes we try to hide it away, but most of the time we fake our condition and hope nobody notice but deeply we scream a help and hope other people to lend a hand for us.

That’s kinda deep and to be honest I think everyone can easily relate to that one way or another. It also explores the identity crisis and the ambiguity of teenager desires with such ease. In the trailer we know “Lady Bird” is not her given name, actually her name is Christine. But she prefer to be called as “Lady Bird”. The thing is even her parents was not even mad with her for already changing her bird name. They called her as the way she want to be called. Why? Because for parents (aged people) a name is not a big deal, instead of that a quality of someone is a way more important.

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That’s why Lady bird never get a problem for changing her name but she always get a problem because of her attitude. Is it wrong? We realize its not, it is the human nature of a parents who want their children to have a good quality of human being and its human nature of a children to keep rejected and rebelling everything that given by their parents. Maybe it’s a dream for every teenager to change their name.

For a teenager a name is not only a “name”, more than that a name is their identity. That time when Lady Bird change her name was a symbol that she want to out from any control of her parents. It is a dream for every children to seek and find their true identity without any preasure from their parents.  For the parents, this movie show us that if you keep your children under your eyes and not even give them a free space where they can be everything they want, they will keep rebelling and rejecting. ‘Lady Bird” was a symbol of every teenager dream who wants to get out of their house, leaving their strict parents and living their life the way they wanted.

After all, this movie show us the beauty of our human nature. The strange side of our human nature that we might not realize before but always there inside of ourself. This movie show us to embrace our self, scream if we need help, cry if we feel sad, make a difference if we didn’t feel comfortable and go for ourself. Go create our own adventure and living our life to the fullest. It’s a very strong debut for Gerwig and this movie really deserves all the praises from the critics!


Unlikely Relationship between Fish and Human

the shape of water

Over the years, Oscar’s best picture was kinda predictable. Even most of their nominee almost always a period piece or a biopic. But a few years back, Oscar seems to shifts out of their trends by making a few exception including last year when La La Land mistakenly took the Oscar for Moonlight. That’s a very great surprise and it’s hilarious. So when the 2018 Oscar approaching, I expect another shocking winners, and they surprise me again. The Shape of Water won best picture!

It’s shocking really, I mean Oscar never give the best picture to sci fi before so I didn’t see this coming. I thought three billboards would’ve won, but instead they make a  bold choice by chosing Guillermo Del Toro’s fish/human romance. So you might wonder what makes this movie won best picture at Oscar? Well, there are plently of reasons. And some say the movie is fueled with social commentary and very suitable with today’s community especially in America. That’s one of the reasons.

But I think it’s just a damn good movie! The reason is simply : it’s a good movie! Let’s think about it for a second. In paper this movie is so bizzare, I don’t think anyone with a straight mind would greenlit this. I’m not even sure what Del Toro have to say to his producer to produce this movie. Even when I heard the premise of the movie for the first time, I cringe and I thought this was very artsy weird monster movie. But when I watched it, I kinda like it actually.

Sure it’s kinda weird sometimes, especially when you describes how you have sex with a fish. (seriously, go watch it yourself) But overall it’s a great gorgeous monster movie romance! To be honest I’m not a fan of Del Toro, I mean I watched a few of his films, but monsters and weird creatures was never really my favorites. So I didn’t really expect that much before I watch this movie.

This movie tells a story about Elisa, a mute lonely janitor who worked in 1960’s research facility that fell in love with an amphibious fishy creature that’s been held in captivity. If you think that’s weird, wait till you watch the movie. It opens with Elisa masturbated in her bathtub using an egg timer. I think it’s a deliberate choice from Del Toro to introduce the character and there’s an implicit meaning behind it but that’s still one of the weirdest opening scene ever.

Anyway, we follow our lead character Elisa played by Sally Hawkins to the research facility and then things started to get more interesting. There, she met this creatures who’s very unique and somehow can feel her and even communicating with her. As the movie progresses she wanted to save the creatures because Michael Shannon’s character wanted him to be dead.

If you think about it and you look deeper beneath all of this monster thingy façade, it really tells you something. After all, it’s an artsy movie and it tells you more each time you rewatch it. It’s not a heavy movie but it takes more effort to appreciate it. You have to embrace the uniqueness of this movie if you wanted to feel it. And once you do that, this would be a meaningful journey for you.

So you gotta be prepared before watching this movie. Who knows what you got after watching this movie. Maybe it does tell us about love more than conventional love story?  I don’t know. But for me, watching this movie is like eating ice cream as a topping of a pizza. It looks weird but when you taste it, you can taste the sweetness of ice cream as well as the juicy pizza breads at the same time.

As for the technical element of this movie I can sum it all up in one sentence : I’ts amazing. The cinematograpy is great, the production design, the acting and everything else looks stunning as well as beautiful. It really deserves all of the attention and best picture nod from the Oscar. It’s a bit weird but it’s a beautiful movie with so much to say. More importantly, you gotta respect Del Toro’s vision specially after he made that moving speech at Oscar. He’s the prove that we could all reach our dreams and vision one day just like he is. I salute you sir! Well done! Well done indeed!


Visual Storytelling in Dunkirk

dunkirk film

Christopher Nolan has made quite the impression among fans by making great films over the years. From “Memento” to “Inception” and “Interstellar”, he always explore his films with interesting premise and complicated storyline. Last year, he released a film called Dunkirk which focused on the evacuation plan of British army from Dunkirk. This film is different from his typical style and it’s more straight forward in his standart.

Dunkirk is divided in three plots interconnecting with one another with “The Mole”, “The Sea”, and “The Air” storyline.  The story is the least interesting part of the movie because if you think about it the story was pretty simple. All of these three parts tells a story about these soldier who wanted to escape and fight in Dunkirk. And that’s about it really. The story is so simple you can literally sum it all up in just a few sentence.

The story is not very Nolan’esque, but he still make the plot complicated by editing the movie plot backwards and forwards depending on the timeframes of each storyline. It’s turn off for some people but it’s fine for me. And what makes me amaze by this movie is the way Nolan framed his story. I mean, sure the plot is simple enough, but Nolan really did a great job here. The dialog is almost absent in this movie. There are literally very few dialogues here.

Even if the characters speaking, it’s far from the long narration or explanation monologues like his other movies. That makes surprised when I first watch it. I know Nolan, and I know what to expect in all of his movies, but watching him do this is pretty interesting. He really did a great job especially the cinematography. One thing I like about him is his style because he can make anything looks very cinematic and huge. Dunkirk is no different!

I mean, a world war II epic really feels that huge. I genuinely love the cinematography. It’s not only gorgeous, but also making you feel like you’re one of the privates on the beach. The scoring is a masterpiece as well. Nolan has worked with  Hans Zimmer a lot, and in this particular movie I think it really makes me itchy and worried. The ticking clock never feels so intense, and the score keeps going throughout the movie making you anxious each time you listen to it.

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The scoring elevates the movie and the story in general. It gives you the sense of fear and making you present in that beach with the characters. Speaking of the characters, I have to say this one doesn’t really make me remember them too much. As an audience, we ride the journey of the movies with them but I think it lacks the uniqueness and the distinctiveness, specially in the mole storyline.

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In the mole storyline, there are a lot of privates and sometimes I even forgotten our main characters because they almost look the same. I mean the uniform, the hair and everything. The only people I knew from the mole storyline is Harry Styles, and he’s done his best in his acting debut. Instead of using well established actors, Nolan use a newcomer “Fionn Whitehead” as his lead that’s why I didn’t really notice him that much. But I do think that it’s a deliberate choice because he doesn’t want us the audience to feel different from the characters. Nolan wanted us to relate and to be as confused and as desperate like the characters.

By chosing an unknown lead, we feel that we don’t know him and we didn’t really know why he’s there. It’s the point he’s trying to make. He wanted people to know that none of the people on the beach know why they’re there and deserve to be bombed by the germans. All of them just wanted to escape.  I don’t know if my interpretation is true, but at least that’s what I feel.

And I do feel that it could turn some people off too. I mean this movie is a visual masterpiece and probably not your average Hollywood war blockbuster movie you imagine. Some people won’t like the movie because it’s quite different from other war dramas.  Nolan utilize visuals over narration. So I guess it’s safe to say that the movie is the definition of “show don’t tell”. So if you wanted to experience a different WW II drama, you can check it out! It won a few Oscars this year too, so it’s seriously a great movie!


When Grandma’s Having Sweet 20

Sweet 20
Tatjana Saphira Morgan Oey  Kevin Julio 

Do you like watching Korean films? In Indonesia, Korean dramas and Korean film fanbase is quite huge and there are lots of people idolizing Korean actors and actresses. Not to mention the k-pop music that invades our country from early 2010’s to 2015ish. It’s safe to say that Korean pop cultures have made a deep impact in Indonesia’s pop culture. Including film industries too.

A few Indonesian soap opera sometimes borrows from Korean dramas plot or even bluntly copy from them. But we rarely watch an Indonesian film adapted from Korean films before, specially if the it was produced with the association from CJ Entertainment from Korea. The collaboration resulting this movie titled Sweet 20, adapted from“Miss Granny”.

In Korea, Miss Granny was a huge success and one of the box office movies there. The premise is quite unique too. And when you blend it with comedy we will have a very enjoyable movie. The Indonesian adaptation is also pretty good. This movie was played by Tatjana Saphira and tells a story of Fatma, a grandma who leaves home after she overheard her son has a plan to move her to nursing home. When she’s walking the street, she visited a photo studio called “Forever Young”.

Surprisingly, she suddenly turns 50 years younger. As the time goes, she started to infiltrate her friends and family lives by creating a new identity and call her self Mieke. She started to be friends with her grandson and helping him with his band. Overall this movie offers a solid and decent comedy. Not to mention the moral value about family that also quite visible in the movie. The comedy feels a bit cheesy but it’s enough to make the audience laugh.

In the middle of the movie, it turns into a musical drama as Mieke become the vocalist of her grand son’s band. It’s pretty fun although the lipsync is a bit distracting me, but Tatjana gave all she got to play the part and it’s pretty great. I could enjoy the movie because at first I was afraid that it could be flat and unfunny. But Tatjana really deserves a praise here as she really play the role quite well and fluent.  All the supporting cast also play the part very good.

Although I think Morgan Oey was a miscast. I don’t know why but I don’t believe his character. He’s supposed to be a charming handsome man that have power in his hand. But all I got from him is just handsome. He looks good but he didn’t have the charisma to be as charming as it should be. He didn’t shine in this one but it doesn’t really ruin the movie.

I also like the tone and colour of the movie. It’s so colourfull, probably because they’ve collaborated with CJ Entertainment so they could copy the original movie’s tone. But it sure looks pretty good on screen. Watching this movie is like eating a very big round lollipop with lots of flavours on it. It looks very colourfull and taste really sweet.

Although the movie was adapted from Korean film, but we wouldn’t feel the Korean vibes here. Sweet 20 feels grounded to Indonesian culture because it was adapted rather good. The generation gap jokes was quite funny at times although a few of those feels slightly unnecessary and overdo. But for me this movie still lacks the heart. This is an entertaining movie, but that’s it. It stops there.

It’s a good adaptation but it lacks the heart and the touchy feely that the original offered. It’s a sweet and fun ride but during the last 20 minutes of the movie, it turns into a cheesy family drama. We’re forgetting the deeper character’s problem and inner conflict because we spent the most part of story in happiness, comedy and the fun they had. The choices Mieke made in the end of the story didn’t really impact audience as it supposed to be.  As a result, it just fell flat. In the end, it’s a great flick. It’s an entertaining movie especially if you watch it with your family. It’s a very good adapttion too and you’ll have fun watching it.